General Election 2019: Scottish Greens rule out pacts with Lib Dems

Scottish Greens, co-led by Patrick Harvie, have ruled out election pacts with the Liberal Democrats.
Scottish Greens, co-led by Patrick Harvie, have ruled out election pacts with the Liberal Democrats.
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The Scottish Green Party will not enter a general election "pact" with the Liberal Democrats after the party voted against the recent Transport Bill passed in the Scottish Parliament.

Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson is believed to be in talks with other parties about electoral pacts - where one party withdraws to ensure the pro-Remain vote is not split - including the Greens in England, Plaid Cymru in Wales and some former Tory MPs.

However the Scottish Greens, which has yet to select all its candidates, said they will not consider such a move in Scotland.

The announcement comes after the party also revealed it would run against the SNP in certain seats, including the ultra-marginal Perth and North Perthshire seat, which is held by Pete Wishart.

The SNP MP had asked the Scottish Greens so keep the seat "Tory free" by not fielding a candidate and splitting the pro-independence vote. However Elspeth Maclachlan will contest the seat for the Greens, as the party criticised Mr Wishart for “advocating for obscenely wealthy oil and gas firms to receive tax breaks”.

Today they have also ruled out similar deals with the Liberal Democrats. Scottish Green MSP John Finnie said: “Jo Swinson accepted donations from a fund which invests in Russia-sponsored fracking. Under her, the Lib Dems are tacking to the right to woo Tory voters, including voting against the Transport Bill. She knows there’s no point in asking for the Scottish Greens for help during a climate emergency.

“This election is vitally important for the climate. It is the first general election since the UN’s report of 2018 which gave us only 11 years to reverse global warming. None of the other parties have recognised this urgency. The loudest and clearest way to demand climate action is to vote Scottish Green.”

Asked if there were seats where the party would stand against the Liberal Democrats, a Scottish Greens spokesperson added: “If we opt not to stand in any Lib Dem seats it wouldn’t be to help them or anyone else. Every party needs to be held to account on their lack of action to address the climate emergency."